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Gillette wants to know, ‘Is stubble killing the kiss?’

Graphic included with Gillette’s press release.

Forget that Hollywood hunk with a mug full of five o’clock shadow. Many American women have little desire to canoodle and snog with a fuzzy galoot.

So concludes a new survey cited by Gillette, the razor brand with Boston roots. After pondering the results, Gillette researchers asked, “Is stubble killing the kiss?”

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According to Gillette, there’s circumstantial evidence that kissing is on the decline, and ill-shaven men may be a big reason why.

Gillette bases this theory on a recent telephone survey of 1,080 women that was fielded by Braun Research Inc. Nearly one of three respondents indicated that they have avoided kissing a guy because he had facial hair; more than half of the respondents said they have experienced facial scraping or irritation after kissing a gent with whiskers. Gillette is calling its experiment “Kiss & Tell.”

Deciding that this subject needs more scientific inquiry, Gillette said it is starting a “nationwide experiment” that asks real-life couples to test their kissing techniques. Women will kiss their boyfriends or husbands when the men are in both shaven and unshaven conditions. Women will then be asked which was preferrable.

The experiment kicks off Wednesday with events in New York and Los Angeles, and celebrities such as actress and singer-songwriter Nikki Reed, singer and songwriter Keri Hilson, actress and designer Kristin Cavallari, and TV personality and entrepreneur Adrienne Bailon have been recruited to help out.

“With many men shaving less-frequently due to sensitive skin discomfort, we want to give women a chance to speak up about how this rise in stubble might be impacting the kiss,” Elliott Wilke, brand manager for Gillette, said in a statement.

Needless to say, Gilletter offers a full array of razors and shave preps that it claims will turn even the most rugged of Romeos into a kissable smoothie.

Gillette is now a brand of the consumer giant Procter & Gamble Co.

Chris Reidy can be reached at reidy@globe.com.
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